Patrick Henry College, where I teach as a Literature Professor and which I administer as the Provost, stands in stark contrast to the institutions and educational methods that I have been criticizing. We offer a classical Christian education with the highest academic standards to some of the best and the brightest young people in our nation.Once each semester, we dismiss classes for a day that is devoted to what we call a “Faith and Reason Lecture.” A speaker, usually alternating between an outside scholar and one of the scholars on our faculty, delivers to the entire campus community a substantive academic presentation exemplifying Christian scholarship. After the lecture, we discuss it over lunch, then break into our Christian study groups (an ongoing book study led by a faculty member) to talk about it in depth. Then we all meet together for a panel discussion with other faculty members, and then an extensive period of Q&A from our students.Our lecture this semester was by my colleague David Aikman, an Englishman who spent 23 years as an international correspondent with “Time Magazine” and is currently our writer in residence and one of our history professors. He spoke on the subject of a new book that will soon be released, a consideration of the “New Atheists” currently in vogue. Here is his paper.Today I thought I’d post just a couple of tidbits, things I learned from what Dr. Aikman said. I am not even trying to do justice to the way he took apart Christopher Hitchens, Sam Harris, Daniel Dennett, and Richard Dawkins. You can read that for yourself. (I’ll try to remember to post something on his book when it comes out.)
P.S.: I’m having trouble making paragraphs on this WordPress blog software. So please don’t think I don’t know how to sort out my prose properly. And if anyone knows how I can fix the problem–I’m striking out on “help”–please let me know.